Emmanuel Macron asked his prime minister, Edouard Philippe, and his government to resign as the French president follows through on a pledge to reinvent his government and move past a disastrous election last month.
Macron accepted the resignation on Friday, his office said in an emailed statement. The prime minister and his government will continue handling affairs until a new administration is formed, a process that could take days.
Macron, 42, is seeking a new lease on his presidency, contending with a Yellow Vest movement that has rallied against his efforts to overhaul the pension system as well as a pandemic that has caused nearly 30,000 French deaths. His Republic on the Move party was broadly rejected in a June 28 municipal ballot that saw the Green Party gain strongholds throughout the country.
The French leader has been walking a fine line between promises to overhaul his policies while also standing by commitments to make the nation more friendly to international investors. So far, he’s pledged that his government would invest an extra 15 billion euros ($16.9 billion) over the next two years to facilitate the economy’s environmental transition.
The reshuffle is the first step ahead of the appointment of a new government, which can intervene days later, according to France’s Constitution. Philippe could be reappointed as prime minister.
Philippe, whose popularity has risen during the coronavirus crisis, has been eyed as a possible contender in the next presidential election in 2022. In an Elabe poll published this month, 57% of respondents said Philippe should remain in his post as prime minister.
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